This article first appeared on HR.com.
Hiring and training new employees can be as stressful for managers as it is for new hires. When onboarding a new employee, organizations must first ensure that all relevant departments are aware of the new employee and what they must do to make this new employee successful – hint: it’s not forgetting to order a computer! Additionally, the employee also wants to set themselves up for success by understanding all of the required onboarding processes, what is needed from them, and where to find any additional information.
It can be an overwhelming process, but one that companies must get right, especially when 46 percent of new hires fail within 18 months. But according to a study by the Wynhurst Group, when employees experience a structured onboarding, they are 58 percent more likely to stay with organization after three years. Therefore, ensuring that the onboarding process is as smooth and educative as possible will ultimately benefit both the employee and the company.
The good thing is that technology is making it easier than ever for HR teams and managers to improve onboarding. A growing number of companies are turning to micro apps – lightweight, highly targeted apps – to help them automate their onboarding process and get employees settled in faster. How? Micro apps are built by IT on top of the existing on-premises, legacy, and SaaS systems, and deliver relevant system information, tasks that need to be completed, and changes in business data directly into a personalized feed. When new employees have immediate access to the tasks they need to complete and the information they need to do their jobs, it enables them to settle in faster and sets them for success.
Here are three ways micro apps can help employees get through their first week seamlessly:
1. Notify all departments of new employees before they start
Onboarding requires multiple departments to work together to prepare for a new employee. The IT team has to make sure new employees have a computer and are added to existing systems like Outlook, Salesforce, or Oracle. The facilities team has to make sure these employees have a desk, a phone, and a place to sit before they arrive. And, payroll needs to gather new hire paperwork and ensure documentation is received and entered into the correct system.
Navigating that process can be a headache, especially if different departments are using different systems to get their jobs done. Micro apps can help streamline and automate this process by notifying all of the appropriate people when an action is required for them. For example, a micro app can trigger a notification to IT that tells them to order a computer and add an employee to relevant systems. When this action is complete, IT can mark the task as “finished” which will trigger the next action. With a simple, automated systems in place, all of the different departments are informed and able to complete their actions before the employee’s first day.
2. Make paperwork and initial training a simple day 1 (or week 1) activity
At most companies, an employee’s first day is dedicated to filling out the paperwork and completing the training necessary to get started in a role – not exactly the simplest or least stressful activity the employee will endure. We have all experienced this: we are given a stack of paperwork and required training videos that must be completed – and did I mention, they all have different deadlines with different people (whom we don’t know) to inform when tasks are complete.
A micro app can provide a new hire with the list of activities and paperwork they need to complete, with the associated deadlines, and allow the employee to go down the list and mark each task as complete as it is finished. With each task completion, the appropriate departments and hiring managers are notified, ensuring that tasks stay on track and the process runs seamlessly.
3. Ensure employees know where information is to get them off and running
On average, employees spend two hours a day looking for information they need to do their jobs. If you think about it, that’s one full day each week! For new employees, that number is exponentially higher since they are still trying to make sense of where they can find the information they need and what systems they need to access. According to a 2012 Allied Workforce Mobility Survey, almost 30 percent of companies reported that it takes a year or longer for a new employee to reach full productivity.
Micro apps help in this regard. Instead of forcing an employee to log into multiple systems to get the information they need, employees are delivered the relevant information they want (or don’t yet know they want) without having to search for it manually. And, as the employee uses her apps more, her usage is monitored to learn what information is most important, when it should be delivered, and where it needs to go – a mobile device, an email, an intranet, a messenger – to be most effective.
Onboarding new employees doesn’t need to be a painful process for employees or managers. Micro apps allow companies to streamline their onboarding process and leave new employees feeling satisfied, productive, and engaged from their first day on the job.